Sexually Transmitted Infection Screening
Our physicians recommend that all sexually active females between the age of 16 and 24 and any woman considered ‘high risk’, be screened at least annually for sexually transmitted infections.
There are 20 million new cases of sexually transmitted infections every year in the US and young people age 15-24 account for half of all new cases. Many STIs have no symptoms at all but can have lasting consequences if not treated. The CDC recommends that all sexually active patients under age 25, and older women with risk factors, be screened annually for sexually transmitted infections.
Common sexually transmitted infections include the following: HIV/AIDS, Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, Syphilis, Trichomonas, Hepatitis, Herpes and HPV (genital warts). Other, less common STIs, are Chancroid, Lymphogranuloma Venereum, Mycoplasma genitalium, Pubic Lice and Scabies.
STIs and Infertility
Chlamydia and Gonorrhea are preventable causes of infertility. Most women with these two infections will have no symptoms at all. If untreated, about 10-15% of women diagnosed with chlamydia will develop PID. Chlamydia can also cause a “silent” infection in the fallopian tubes. These infections can cause permanent damage to the fallopian tubes, ovaries, and surrounding tissues which can lead to infertility.
Screening for STIs
Screening for STIs is simple and can be done by obtaining a blood sample, a vaginal swab, urine sample, or swab from a sore or ulcer.
Treatment of STIs
Most STIs can be treated effectively with antibiotics or antivirals. If you are diagnosed with an STI, it is not the end of the world as most STIs are curable and all are treatable. Be sure to discuss all treatment options with your physician.
Prevention of STIs
There are some easy ways to prevent contracting a sexually transmitted infection: (1) Know your partners sexual history and limit the number of sexual partners that you have; (2) Use a latex condom; (3) Avoid risky sexual acts; (4) Get immunized for HPV and Hepatitis.
You can learn more at the following websites:
Prevention of STIs:
Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, Syphilis:
Pelvic Inflammatory Disease:
IMPORTANT INFORMATION REGARDING TESTING FOR CHLAMYDIA AND GONORRHEA